The community of Wilkie, Saskatchewan, now has a new and beautiful mural painted by Pat Welter of Masterhand Signs of Unity!
The mural is a result of the hard work and dedication of the volunteers of RENEW. They include Myrna Sander, who came up with the idea of making downtown Wilkie rejuvenated by adding flowers and trees, Julie Brooks, David Ziegler, Marlene Palahicki, Maureen O’Hara and council representative Jason Nissen. Volunteers from the community also help out.
This group of people came together to help beautify the downtown core of Wilkie. They have worked long and hard hours, fundraising to be able to buy large flower pots, benches, street lights and trees and continue to make our community a more beautiful place to live and for visitors to enjoy! Also over the years, may individuals have donated to RENEW, including a special donation in memory of Kay Frehlich of Wilkie. They also commissioned Chris Kent, art teacher at McLurg along with his students to paint the first mural.
The mural was a combination of ideas from RENEW members. One of the main points was that they wanted to have colour, lots and lots of colour, in the mural to represent the colour of the flowers and trees they have planted throughout the years. After discussions with Pat and his input, the new mural is proudly displayed on 2nd Street East.
Pat took the time and patience to research the history of downtown Wilkie and the mural includes new and old buildings, the Canadian Pacific Railway station, elevator and old engine.
Also included in the mural is a sheaf of wheat to represent the contributions of the many farmers and their families around Wilkie.
Included in the mural is “Alfred, the Press Fly”! Pat thoroughly enjoyed the story about “Alfred,” who was a real reporter for the Wilkie Press! RENEW is hoping people will check out the mural to find “Alfred.”
Another feature of the mural is the way it seems to move! This is another feature to figure out.
RENEW have planted the new flowers for this upcoming season and, to honour the 100th anniversary of the Wilkie Outlaws, the large pots on the Wilkie Post Office steps will be green and white. The Wilkie Outlaws, when hearing about the green and white pots, have had Classic Designs of Wilkie make Outlaw flags which will be in the many pots during the anniversary celebrations July 31, Aug. 1 and 2.
To the members of RENEW – a huge, huge thank you for being such a great group of people for work and dedication! Well done, everyone!
(Article and Photos by Kathy Heilman)